Animal welfare groups are working to support the rescue and evacuation of pets war-torn Ukraine and sending supplies to animal shelters threatened by the Russian invasion.
James Sawyer, UK Director of the International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW), said the BBC The organization operates two animal shelters in Ukraine with over 1,100 dogs in their care and has provided them with food and supplies.
“The devastation caused by some of these missile attacks, this open environment full of glass, concrete and metal, is dangerous for people but also for animals,” Sawyer said.
He said one of the shelters came under fire during a Russian attack, killing one animal. Staff were afraid to start fires, he said, fearing it might draw attention to the shelters.
“Local supplies are running low,” he said of the dire situation.
The German branch of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) said it is currently coordinating a shipment of nearly 20 tons of pet food and blankets to animal shelters in Ukraine. They also offer vaccinations for animals.
The group said it is working with a partner organization in Romania, which has crossed the border into Ukraine, to rescue abandoned animals.
Many refugees have had to abandon their furry friends at the border because they do not meet criteria imposed by the European Union for pets to be vaccinated, microchipped and tested for rabies.
However, many countries, including Ukraine’s neighbors Hungary, Poland, Romania and Slovakia, have eased their restrictions. Animal groups confirmed.
More than 1.4 million people have fled their homes in Ukraine Since Russia began its invasion, many families have been forced to relocate to neighboring countries, bringing with them only what they can carry – a few documents, photos and their beloved pets.
Kyiv native Ludmilla Nadzemovska prepared to evacuate a month ago, buying travel cages for her four cats amid signs of an imminent Russian invasion. She fled to Hungary with her cats after hearing that her neighbors had been killed by Russian forces.
“I want to go back,” she told The Associated Press while sitting in a camp in Tiszabecs, Hungary, just across the border. “But my priority is my family and the pets.”
Another refugee, Lena Nesterova, said she fled with her family after the first explosions sounded on the first day of the invasion of Kyiv and took “only [my] Daughter, dog, all documents.”
“We left everything. We have no clothes, nothing,” Nesterova said. “And we don’t know what will be after that.”
Their daughter, 18-year-old Margo, was holding the family toy Chihuahua in the safety of a refugee camp in the border town of Siret, Romania.
Pets are not the only animals suffering from violence. Zoo animals are also threatened by air raids and shelling, including those in the Kiev Zoo where there was fierce fighting reported nearby last week.
The Kiev Zoo is home to around 4,000 animals, including elephants, camels and Ukraine’s only gorilla. The chance to evacuate the critters has already passed, zoo officials said.
“It’s almost impossible to evacuate animals because it’s impossible to provide adequate veterinary service and transportation,” said Kyrylo Trantin, the zoo’s director. said EuroNewsand adds that the zoo only has enough food supplies to feed the animals for a few more days.
With postal wires
https://nypost.com/2022/03/06/ukrainian-pets-animals-rescued-amid-russian-violence/ Ukrainian pets, animals rescued amid Russian violence